Friends Coming to Jesus | Mark 2:3–5

And they came, bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men. And when they could not get near him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him, and when they had made an opening, they let down the bed on which the paralytic lay. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, ‘Son, your sins are forgiven.’ ”

News of a cured leper spreads exponentially.  So, it’s unclear what this crowd expects when gathering around Jesus.  Since a paralytic is brought to our Lord, it is safe to say many expected their own healings.  What they received was Jesus’s own preaching, and more walked away with His knowledge than walked into the house.

They learned that faith saves.  Jesus sees the collective faith of the five friends as they executed their plan.  Consider the trust of the paralytic, bound to his bed, as his friends lower him into a crowded room through a fresh hole in the roof; he brought nothing to Jesus, like a helpless child with only this one hope.  Hebrews 11:6 says, “And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.”  Where we are weak in our faith, may the Lord help us in our unbelief (cf. Mk 9:24)!

They learned that they needed more from Jesus than they expected.  Often, we come to Christ with one issue, but we must trust Him when He begins addressing another.  The five friends (as well as the crowds) learned this with the messages they received.  Jesus could heal all their physical maladies, but spiritual healing was far more important.  They needed the gospel, the good news that Christ could forgive their sins. 

They learned the blessing of bringing a soul to Jesus.  Perhaps they did not know this, but they knew enough to come to Jesus.  As Proverbs 11:30 in the KJV says, “He that winneth souls is wise.”  As J. Vernon McGee says here, “What we need in the church today is stretcher-bearers—men and women with that kind of faith to go out and bring in the unsaved so they can hear the Gospel.”

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